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david robertson

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About david robertson

  • Rank
    Chatty concertinist
  • Birthday 06/08/1948

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  • Interests
    Full-time restorer and tuner of concertinas, part-time abuser of a 38k Jeffries Anglo. I also arrange for and sing with a 3-part harmony group called Poacher.
  • Location
    Norwich, England

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  1. david robertson

    It's raining Anglo's!

    Correction... due to a clumsy bit of cut-and-pasting, I said the Ball Beavon is a C/G. In fact, it is in Bb/F.
  2. david robertson

    Do you oil the leather bellows on a concertina?

    For old, dry and crusty gussets (ugh!) I use Connolly Hide Care. It's a white lanolin cream - and lanolin, after all, was what kept the leather in good condition when it was still on the sheep or goat.
  3. david robertson

    It's raining Anglo's!

    Just at the moment, I can offer a choice of five high-quality Anglo's, as follows: 1. 40k Wheatstone Linota, C/G, ebony ends, SN 28227. This is one I restored about 3 years ago, and the owner has now decided, in his own words, that it has about 15 buttons too many for him! It is still in lovely, little-used condition, and a wonderful player. £4000. 2. 30k Wheatstone, C/G, rosewood ends, SN 50325. According to Robert Gaskin's research, this one was made around 1938. I find it hard to believe, though, because it looks, and plays, as if it left the Wheatstone factory last week. £2250. 3. 30k Ball Beavon, C/G, metal ends, SN 8912. Made by Crabb for Ball Beavon, this one is nearing completion - and judging by the way it played before I started work on it, it's going to be a cracker! £3750. 4. 38k Jeffries, Bb/F. Currently sitting on the "to-do" shelf, this one is just as we like to find them, needing only routine restoration, and with an excellent set of reeds. Guide Price £4500. 5. 30k Shakespeare (?), C/G, raised metal ends. Another one from the waiting room. It looks, internally, exactly like a Crabb or Jeffries. Very similar fretwork too, but the ends are slightly raised, which suggests Shakespeare. In any case, it's a quality instrument with a fine set of reeds. Guide price £3750. For further details, contact me via my website (concertina-restoration.co.uk) or call me on 01603 702644.
  4. david robertson

    San-serif Jeffries?

    Hi Alex, I went to have a closer look yesterday, and I too shared my suspicions with the auctioneer... but I'll bet their description won't change! The reeds look fairly clean, but so many pads were adrift that I couldn't get a sound out of it. In addition, the ends had been switched right to left! The bellows are completely shot, and the general condition is so tatty that I never even bothered to look at the stamps on the reed frames... sorry!
  5. david robertson

    San-serif Jeffries?

    No, it's a 38-key Anglo.
  6. david robertson

    San-serif Jeffries?

    I only get 3 or 4 Jeffries a year passing through my hands, but I don't recall ever having seen one with 'C. JEFFRIES MAKER' stamped in a san-serif typeface like this one. Another curiosity is that it seems to have 5 screws securing the bush-board, rather than the usual two. Is it a bit naughty, or just a type of Jeffries that I haven't seen before?
  7. david robertson

    Superb Jeffries in B/F#

    Yes, I know it's unusual, but no, it isn't a mistake. This very rare combination of keys is how it was made, and how all the reeds are stamped. I'm told that it might be quite useful for anyone who likes to play along with Irish pipes, but I also find it a lovely choice for song accompaniment. It has had my usual comprehensive restoration, including new 7-fold bellows, straps, pads, valves, bushes etc. I have stripped and French polished the woodwork, and although the ends look as if they have been replated, in fact they have simply been re-polished by my ace metal finishing man... thanks, Kevin! It is tuned to modern concert pitch, and plays as a Jeffries should - fast, bright, brash and fearsomely loud. If you're within a gnat's crotchet of Norwich, you're more than welcome to come and have a squeeze, or if you have a question, just call me on 044 (0)1603 702644 or drop me a message via this site. Price: £4500
  8. david robertson

    30-button rosewood Lachenal Anglo

    The serial number is 125981. And by the way, I forgot to mention that it's in C/G. On the subject of dating, I'm not sure whether your database covers only Lachenal Anglo's, but in case it also includes English models, I sent you a PM last October, which you may not have spotted, so here's the gist of it again: "I just spotted a Lachenal treble in an auction in Felixstowe which I hope will make a small contribution to your dating database. It comes with its original receipt, dated 11th March 1919, and the serial number is 57772." All the best, David
  9. david robertson

    30-button rosewood Lachenal Anglo

    I'm selling this one on behalf of a regular customer who is thinning the herd a little. It has been through my usual restoration process - new pads, valves, dampers, bushes and straps, plus tuning to modern concert pitch. I have not, however, refinished the woodwork. There are no cracks or breaks in the fretwork, but what you get is the patina that arises from a century of music-making. I have re-bound the bellows, treated them to a new set of green and gold papers, and shimmed the end seals to keep the instrument beautifully airtight. The result is a lovely player, and very good value at £1700. As always, you're welcome to come and try it if you're within striking distance of Norwich, or call me with any questions on 01603 702644.
  10. david robertson

    Jeffries in B/F# (really!)

    Thank you all for your input. My strong inclination is to leave it in its original keys. If it takes a while to sell, I'll use it to sing with... G is sometimes a bit of a stretch for my ageing voice! Mind you, singing with any Jeffries can feel more like a contest than a collaboration!
  11. david robertson

    Jeffries in B/F# (really!)

    I have just acquired a 30-key Jeffries which turns out to be in the keys of B/F#. Stranger still, it is pretty close to modern concert pitch throughout, though the reeds look original and untouched. So here's the question: I'm reluctant to tune it up to C/G, but would anyone want it in its original tuning, or should I take it down to Bb/F? Any experiences, opinions or expressions of interest gratefully received.
  12. If you do decide to replace the bellows end seals, bear in mind that the edges of the new chamois will be visible, unless you also re-bind the ends of the bellows. When installing the new chamois seal, cut the chamois strip a little wider and longer than required. Glue the inner surfaces of the frames first, install the chamois strip, and cut the overlap so that the ends meet. Before gluing the mating surface of the frames, use a hole punch to cut the holes in the chamois for the end-bolts. Then glue the edges and stick the chamois down. Finally, turn the bellows over on a cutting mat, and with your scalpel or craft knife, trim off the surplus chamois.
  13. david robertson

    Wheatstone 48k treble for sale

    This is a good mid-range Wheatstone (No. 32676 - 1931) which I recently took in as a trade-in. It was already in good playing condition, having clearly had new pads and valves fitted in the not-too-distant past. It has a fine set of reeds, and is fast and bright. In fact, I have done almost nothing to it, apart from checking through the tuning, so I'm happy to offer it for £1250 - very little more than I paid. As always, you're welcome to come and have a squeeze in Norwich - just drop me a PM, or call 01603 702644.
  14. david robertson

    32-key Jones Anglo for sale

    Now sold via my website, and off to a new home in Florida.
  15. Hopefully, new pads would be thicker than original ones, so the button would be lowered, not raised. But the pivot post is the most likely culprit... either excessive wear, or coming loose and rising from the base board. If so, pull it out, apply a little dab of glue, and tap it back into place.